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Friday, December 31, 2010

2011 Goals

Hmmm. It's that annual time of year where I sit down and think of what I'd like to accomplish this year. I always really enjoy this, but it's difficult sometimes to put what I want to do in words. After all, I can't exactly say I want to make the perfect rabbit because yes- that's what we are all trying to do! Every year, I up the ante just a little. If I don't hit these goals, it's ok, but I want to always push myself harder to reach the higher goals!

Top 20 in Sweeps- with reduced shows! I may be cutting down on the number of shows I go to, but I'd still like to secure a place in the Top 20.

BIS/BRIS with a Homebred- You know the deal on this one :D. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride! I'm hoping for it in 2011!

Win a class at Convention- I won a class and BOSG at Nationals, I'd really like to take the honor at Convention this year!

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, December 27, 2010


I bought some supplementary lights for the rabbitry! Yay! I'm excited to get them put up, some of the corners of the rabbitry get kind of dark.

The first show of the New Year is coming up and I can't wait! I've got several rabbits to move out no matter what! When I get home, at least it will mean I've got some cage space! I need to decide who my show team is going to be. While several have chewed up their wool because of a feed issue, I've got some that are looking mighty good! I'll get out there tomorrow and brush everyone and make my final decisions.

I got a power washer and a wet/dry shop vac for Christmas. Bunny cage cleaning is going to be a BREEZE from here on out! I can't wait to get in there and give it a good scrub down.

Come this spring, I'm going to do a permanent reduction down to 40 rabbits. That means at least 5 adults are going to have to go and I'm going to be probably selling the cages so I don't fill them up again immediately. Tim will be thrilled for me to get the overflow out of the garage, so he can actually park the car in there!

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Looking Back at 2010's Resolutions

I'm revisiting my 2010 Rabbitry Resolutions today, so that I can concentrate on looking forward and making new ones before January 1!

In 2010 I wanted to:

Make a Final Decision on the Hollands-accomplished
Grand a Keep's Doe.- accomplished
Top 20 in JW Sweeps- accomplished
BIS or BRIS with a Homebred- failed

Read the whole post here.

Wow, I am surprised to see I didn't have "Win a class at nationals" on that list- I was second for SO LONG and this year I finally did win a class, and actually went on to take BOSG! HUGE thrill, by the way.

I did make a final decision on the hollands- unfortunately, that was to sell them all out to concentrate on the woolies. I don't regret it at all, but I do miss a few of them.

Grand a Keep's Doe! I did this several times, but I got cheated out of one of the legs when the show secretary decided to not send out ANY legs, ANY reports, etc. Yeahhhhhh. BUT, the mission was accomplished by several ladies. So yay!

Top 20 in Sweeps- I was blown away when I placed 10th. BLOWN-AWAY. It made me so happy, because we're a small rabbitry and I don't do a ton of shows.

BIS or BRIS with a homebred- Haven't made this one yet! I've had some looks. I've beaten rabbits in one show that take BIS in the next... but the stars just haven't aligned yet! We have such a beautiful set of rabbits down here all across the breeds that competition is always stiff- it'll happen one day though, I hope anyway!

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Finally making some progress!

I've finally made some progress! Though, I'm suspecting you've guessed that by the title.

I've finally made a few more cuts to the herd!

WWR's Rice Ball- Broken Opal Sr. doe
Keep's Sumac- REW Jr. buck
Keep's ?- Seal Jr. buck
BL's ?- Black Sr. buck
Keep's Cart Wheel- Black Otter Sr. doe

I still need to go through and find a few more animals to let go. I'm wanting to reduce my numbers farther. In fact, I'll have to if I ever want babies born in my rabbitry again! I've got no where to put them as it is lol.

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Misused Terminology

I've seen some terminology that is being misused, so I wanted to take a quick minute and do some general explanations.

Sell Out: This means you are selling out of x breed, x color, whatever. Selling them all. Not keeping a few for breeding purposes, not keeping over half of them, etc. If you plan to keep some or half, use the term "Herd Reduction".

Herd Reduction: Herd Reduction indicates you are selling more than just a few animals and is generally used to indicate a large cut in your overall numbers in the breed, color or general herd.

Carries: This is genes that the animal is proven to carry and produce. An animal can not carry for Agouti. It can not carry shaded and REW and pointed. Every color in the animal's background are simply "background colors", not an indication that the animal does, in fact, carry all those colors.

These are just a quick three I've been seeing a lot. Hope it's helpful to some folks.

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Breeding isn't going so well

Ugh, the breeding side of things isn't going so well!

Dream I think I told you guys about- she's the one that ate all the hay out of her nestbox and was found eating one of the babies. Joy.

Flirt, a doe I brought home from Minnesota, decided to tank her litter in a big way. She pulled her belly BALD and built a beautiful nest- just beside her nestbox. She also kindled (early), in her fantastic nest, two beautiful little babies. When I walked outside, her two babies had frozen and she was snuggled up in the box giving me the evil eye.

So far my other two does haven't kindled. They are a day late. I have three more does due on the 18th. I'm hoping for SOME babies!

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, December 13, 2010

I forgot to say-

Sweeps awards were handed out at the Jersey Wooly Banquet at Convention this year. Since I didn't attend the banquet, my friend Amber over at Wonder Woolies was kind enough to pick up my prize!

I am THRILLED to death with my 10th place towel! It was my first full sweeps year, I never dreamed I would place so high!

Thanks again for picking up my towel Amber!

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, December 11, 2010

It's there!

A major piece of the puzzle I've been working on in my herd is ear thickness. I have several animals that have nice thickness, but they could use just a *tad* more. I don't have any animals that have ears that flop at the tips, no matter WHAT their ear thickness, but I really could use a little more substance.

It's just popped up in my barn!

I'm so excited, a little smoke pearl point (unshowable) that I've been growing out is starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel that is uglies. And there, sitting on top of his widening head, are these thick, beautiful ears.

I'm so happy! This little guy has a beautiful body too and I expect he's going to be a little on the smaller side, so he can work with any of the does!

I'm pretty excited about this little guy growing up and breeding him around to my ladies!

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, December 9, 2010


As most of you know, I had to get a new barn this summer when we moved from the mountains of NC to the piedmont.

We had snow recently and it's been sitting on the barn and on our deck, not really melting. Well, that's not exactly right, we discovered it IS melting- and leaking through the roof to hit the floor in the rabbitry!

I am extremely not happy with this. Thankfully I *believe* it missed most of the rabbit cages, though I suspect that two cages did get hit with dropping water.

We have a work order in to have it fixed, but hooray, I have how many cages full of rabbits in there? I really need someone to be banging around to fix a problem that shouldn't have happened.

Grrr!! It's always something!

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Cold Temps

The temperature has PLUMMETED here in North Carolina. I despise this time of year. Frozen water bottles, bone-chilling winds, kitcicles- blah.

What I most hate are those frozen water bottles though.

I have 9 overflow cages in the garage. These are the crappiest cages I own, and yet the garage bottles don't freeze!

I am thinking of moving some does in to the garage to kindle. At least it's ever so slightly warmer in there, at least for now, and I can check on does and kits without having to brave the freezing winter nights.

I swear, I don't know how people up north live in these kinds of constant temperatures, I really don't. Brrr!

My next litters are due on the 14th and the 18th. Since I've been seeing that next week the temperatures are going to reach the mid-40s to very low 50s, I am thinking that will be the target breeding date for anyone that missed on the last round. I also have a few newly senior does that need to be bred.

I have one little buck who I am going to have to put down. It breaks my heart, but we've been fighting his wry neck for over 3 months now. He simply can NOT recover from it, and while no one else has had any problems, not even his littermates, I just can't continue to deal with it. I also do not want to breed in weaker immune systems. He's so gorgeous, it's going to be a hard thing to do, but it's best for everyone all around, I feel.

The silver lining is that culling him will open up a hole, which is always helpful.

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Not many updates

I don't have a lot going on right now.

I hope everyone who went to Richmond, Va or Columbia, SC had a good time! It ended up snowing here like crazy, so I'm glad I didn't go to Richmond- I prefer not to drive in the snow if at all possible!

I did get a show report in the mail with a few legs in it. That always makes me happy, especially when the legs are on juniors!

It won't be too much longer until I revisit my rabbitry resolutions and make the new ones for 2011! I always look forward to that. It's hard to believe a whole year has gone by again already!!

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It's official

It's definitely official. I'm doing a herd reduction and will be attending less shows.

I had considered going to Richmond this weekend, but I realized I'd be overly stressing myself mostly for POINTS. I'm trying to get an edge on my competitive nature (to a certain degree) and with so many other things going on Saturday and Sunday, I don't want to kill myself over a few points for the rankings. My animals aren't going to be any nicer, or any uglier if I'm 10th on the points list or 100th! This is what I am telling myself, anyway, because I really do enjoy shows. I just feel bad spending so much money on entry fees and travel!

So, there we go. Less shows... More money.

On to the herd reduction, I know at this point in time I am going to be letting a Black Otter Sr. Doe go. She's never been bred because she's not a very old senior yet. If I don't sell her by x date, I'll be breeding her to get her started. I'm also going to have a black almost senior buck.

I also have my eye on a few others that I need to look though. It's unfortunately been super cold or super rainy, and with other things on my plate, I've had to wait on getting out there and going through the animals. Bahhhhhhhh. Maybe tomorrow! Fingers crossed, anyway.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cutting back

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!

I've been thinking about cutting back on the herd numbers and doing less shows lately.

I don't do a TON of shows as it is- I try to hit most of the ones in NC and hopefully do a national or convention show per year. I enjoy it, but it's a lot to keep up with as far as devoting pretty much an entire weekend to a show- we get there early, spend all day at the show, drive x hours home and then spend Sunday trying to recover a bit.

I already said a few months ago I was not going to try as hard for points this year (though to be honest, I didn't do much last year as far as *trying* to get points. I just showed my regular shows and showed the regular number of animals, with the exception of going out of my range to go to PaSRBA).

I dunno- I know I will definitely be moving out some animals. That has to happen anyway because I'm full up as far as cage space goes, but I may cut my already pitiful number of does down a bit to scale down my breeding program.

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, November 19, 2010

Convention Day 3- Judgement Day

Keep's Panda- 3rd place broken junior buck

We rolled up to the Convention Center about a quarter to 8. Judging was set to start at 8am, so imagine my surprise when I hurried to the wooly aisle to find out that Agoutis were already on the table! O.O Thankfully I didn't have any showing in that color group, so I clipped my cages, did a quick wool check and started to feed and water my bunnies.

I believe this was part of the broken senior buck class

Broken Junior bucks being judged

Judging always makes me really nervous- especially at Convention, where you can't see a lot usually, you can't hear and the classes are large, so it takes forever. I stuck around until the broken junior doe class and I finally couldn't take it anymore. I went to find Whitney and seeing that Hares weren't slated to go up until Tuesday, we all decided to go grab lunch and do more sight-seeing. I don't remember if this was the day we went to see the Foshay Tower or we went to see the Sculpture Garden- I'll just do a separate post and put up pictures from both of those incredible experiences!

Keep's Heart Throb, looking ADORABLE

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Convention, Day 2

Creme D'Argent resting in his coop

Wow, so Day 2 of Convention, Sunday, was very much a sight-seeing day. We headed to the showroom first thing that morning to check on the bunnies. With everyone settled in and eating, we went to the Mall of America.

The Spongebob Ride in the Mall!

That was seriously a crazy experience. It's a super huge mall with an indoor theme park. Oh yeah! We rode rollercoasters inside of a mall. How insane is that? We didn't do much shopping, I think everyone agreed that we weren't in Minnesota to go to regular old stores. We wanted to get out and see the state!

Mill Ruins

There were some fascinating abandoned Mill parks and of course- we went and spit in the Mississippi River for luck! We went back to the Mill Ruins several times during the trip.

We also took a quick trip over in to Wisconsin, so we could all add a state to our "traveled to" list.

Checkered Giant, after his wild night out.

We heard that the Checkered Giants busted down their coops one of the nights of Convention and were running amok all night long throughout the showroom. Supposedly when they opened up the Convention Center and found the mess, the security guard threw his hands up, took a step back and said "I'm not dealing with this!"

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Convention, Day 1

We did something I've never done for a large show before- we FLEW! It was wild. We flew first to Atlanta, before catching the next flight to Minnesota. Baggage Claim was a nightmare and apparently in Minnesota they don't really "do" Sky Captains, which made it rough on us to get my friend and roomie's Belgian Hares to the rental car area! Thankfully we found someone with a car to haul the bunnies around.

Unfortunately, troubles didn't end there! We realized that there was no way two large dog kennels full of large rabbits were going to fit in the Hyundai Sonata we were given as a rental car. We upgraded and finally were able to get on our way- with Whitney illegally sitting in what I can only estimate as approximately a foot of space.

One of the dog crates and the Sonata.

Thanks to Lisa, we found out that the line to check in that was stretching around the building was well over an hour wait, so we found a metered spot. I met up with Lisa to get my bunnies and we managed to sneak them inside the building, before getting caught by a security guard. Thankfully he let us continue on to the show room, but it was clear we weren't going to get Whitney's animals in the same way.

Thankfully, while we were checking in Tim happened to plop down next to Teri Reymann, who recognized my rabbitry name! She was such a sweetie and volunteered the use of her cart to us- so Tim and Whitney headed out to get the hares while I checked over my wooly babies. They all came through the trip fairly well, though several completely blew their coats and several lost a lot of condition. Since they had driven a straight 20 hours, I can't say I blamed them at all!

The woolies at check in, looking tired!

We got everyone settled in- fed, watered, ziptied, etc and then headed out. We finally made it to the hotel, where we were greeted with a "Welcome Rabbit Breeders" sign, featuring a Belgian Hare. I should have known then it was going to be a Hare kind of week! We dropped off our bags and my carriers, then headed out for a very late dinner. The three of us were nodding off over our food. It was an early night for all of us, we were completely exhausted after the worry and stress of getting the animals to Minnesota, then settled in for what was going to be a long few days!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, November 12, 2010

Back From Convention!

We're back from Convention and wow. It was definitely an interesting experience- this is only my second convention. I've learned a few things and will be implementing a new sales policy for future conventions, to help make the process less stressful for me.

We did really well considering. My lovely friend Lisa Young transported the animals 20+ hours for me and wow- some of them really took the trip hard! Poplar, Cairo, Lifeline and Juniper all completely blew their coats or heads- or both!

Despite that, here are my results!

Broken Jr. Buck- 3rd
Self Sr. Doe- 4th
Self Sr. Buck-10th
Shaded Jr. Doe- 4th
Shaded Jr Buck- 7th
Shaded Sr. Buck- 6th
Shaded Sr. Buck- 9th

So I didn't do as well as I would have liked, but hey, I did pretty darn well, I think! I was rooming with the BOSB Belgian Hare owner. She had a pair of Keep's Hares and I'm happy to say Keep's Bandito Jr. placed 6/12 in the senior buck class! He produced the 2/12 animal though! YAY!!! She also named a rabbit for me- and Keepee won the Senior Doe class! I'm not sure how Keep's Ariel placed, it was a very large senior doe class, but I think she held her own pretty well.

I fell in love with at least a dozen breeds this week! I have to say, I learned so much about Rhinelanders, I'm looking at them in a whole new light!

I've got so many Convention stories to share, but I'll have to get to those a little later, I'm still completely exhausted!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, November 5, 2010


We are leaving tomorrow to fly up to Minnesota for Convention! The rabbits are already on the road.

I'm so excited- I get to see a new part of the country, see friends I get to visit with maybe once a year (or less often) and of course- a week off work for a rabbit show! SQUEE!

I will be taking my laptop, which I wasn't expecting to do, so there may be an update or two. I'm also planning on taking pictures like CRAZY.

Everyone keep your fingers crossed for a safe trip for all the folks and the bunnies headed up to the Convention and for a safe trip home!

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


I'm feeling REALLY selfish right now, so I'm going to talk it out here.

I love Keep's Tryon. LOVE him. I owe that buck a lot, several national placings, the quality of my shaded herd, my first big wins, etc. So, I've always said he has a home here for life.

I've found myself using other bucks a lot more lately. Part of it is because he's in the pedigree of nearly every shaded rabbit, but now that's just not true- I've got several unrelated bucks and several unrelated does.

My goal lately has been to slightly "upsize" my woolies. I LOVE their size and I love them small, but I want to keep them from getting too tiny to compete. Tryon is a beautiful, bulky, man beast of a bunny, but he's also kind of small.

He has started being pitiful in his cage whenever he sees someone else get a lady friend.

I'm wondering if it's selfish to keep him. After all, he had a 1 in a million impact on my herd and I know he'd do that anywhere he goes.

I still show him and he seems to really love being on the table. Judge Jamie Green mentioned his "presence" on the table at the last show. He loves being admired!

He's such a goofball. I love to snuggle him- he lets me carry him around like a little rag doll.

I dunno what I'm even talking this out for, that rabbit isn't going anywhere. He's a for-lifer.

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, November 1, 2010

Less than a week until Convention!

Less than a week until Convention!

Some of the things I still have to do:

Touch up ALL tattoos!
Clip Nails
Make Cage Tags
Print pedigrees for the sale rabbits
Get together food and water for the transporter
Adjust and clean carriers
Pack showroom bag
Finish packing clothing
Print all confirmations

-- Wow, I still have a LOT to do!

I was checking coats earlier and right now we seem to be about 50/50 on either nice coats or extremely molty!

I'm about to start the rabbits on daily Nutri-drops. This will hopefully help prevent them from losing major condition on the trip!

I tried to order some risers from KW Cages, unfortunately I never got a phone call back (all lines were busy) and never got a response to my email. So I'm not sure what the situation will be when I get to Minnesota! I'm really hoping I'll be able to find nice metal risers, but if I have to, I can make do with resting mats.

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween! I hope everyone has a safe and fun evening- or had one, if you celebrated last night!

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Whiner's Line

I wanted to take a moment to say thank you.

With Convention coming up and with the entries due, then ear number changes due just recently, so many of you have listened to me whine and cry about how none of my top animals are in condition and coat- you've listened to me worry about who to take and flip flop 100 times!

Thank you for letting me whine and fuss.

I told someone earlier I need to worry less about doing well and just enjoy the Convention! I know that many of you are in the same position.

Since I will be attending Convention, this year I won't be doing my update of winners and CODs that have passed and failed. I will try to get you a full list of that after I get home!

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Hard Work

I started my wooly herd with some great stock. I've bred hard, I've culled hard and I've tried to produce the best animals I could- and I try to only sell breeding animals that go above and beyond my standards. For instance- several "brood" animals I've sold have ended up as show animals, and kicked some butt on the tables.

I noticed a few years ago that I was getting one of two comments a LOT. That was "lacking a little in lower HQ". Admittedly, the rabbits were still winning and winning quite often. I decided that was something I really wanted to work on though. It wasn't a massive problem, most were only lacking a little but it bugged me to hear it so often.

I culled a lot of animals. I sold the overall better animals to keep the ones with better HQs. I linebred- and I fixed my HQ in one generation. No joke. I didn't bring in a lot of new animals, I built with what I already had. The next generation built on top of those solid HQs- and so on.

This weekend, one of the judges really made a point of talking about HQs. It was something that she felt was really important and even commented that a lot of woolies seem to be lacking in that lower HQ.I was so proud that ALL of the rabbits I put on the table received comments like "full to the ground." "Now THIS one has a butt...", etc. Every...single...one.

I can't tell you how good that made me feel. It is something I continue to be really picky on and I love that my hard work has paid off and I've produced some very consistent HQs in the herd.

It just put a big smile on my face and I think it's going to be on there a while!

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, October 18, 2010

Fairview Show

Wow, the Fairview Show was AWESOME!! If you didn't attend this time, definitely make plans to attend next year!

I went not expecting much- most of the Convention team is at home *hopefully* growing coats, so I pulled together a few very molty juniors, a few semi-molty seniors and one doe in coat.

Even with the one senior doe in coat, I didn't like her chances of getting her final leg that much. She is a little on the bigger side than I am used to and I knew competition was going to be tough.

Then again, what do I know? That doe ended up taking BOB in Show A! WHOA! To say I was surprised is an understatement.

I was so happy with my placements. I got lots of class wins or 2nd places, which is always a happy moment! It gives me a lot of hope for the future of my herd :).

Keep's Rabbitry

Keeping the Pedigrees Correct!

This is something that can be confusing for new breeders-

A pedigree is an official document. As such- IT SHOULD NOT BE ALTERED.

Exceptions are:
Adding an ear number if one is not on the pedigree.
Adding a name if one is not on the pedigree.
Adding a weight for the animal, if one is not on the pedigree.
Changing a color IF it turns out to be inaccurate.

That's pretty much it. You can not CHANGE an ear number. You can not CHANGE a prefix. The only time it is acceptable to put your prefix on an animal is if you bred the animal. Even if the animal is not pedigreed (such as a pet store rabbit), do not put your prefix on it- you didn't breed it.

If I name an animal Keep's Fluffylumpkins and you don't like the name, tough turkey. You can call him Frank, you can call him Joe, you can call him anything you want to. Pedigree wise, his name better stay Fluffylumpkins, because that is his official pedigreed name.

It's always best to just leave the pedigree alone. You don't want accusations that your pedigrees are falsified or contain false information- and that's exactly what it is when you start changing information. Plus, if you ever lose the pedigree and contact me wanting "Frank's" pedigree, you're not going to get it. In my records, he's still Fluffylumpkins. :)

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Do I regret it?

I've had folks ask before if I ever regret getting in to rabbits.

Whoa, a loaded question. I regret parts. I regret that the rabbits have caused us trouble when we first got married and were looking for a house to rent. I regret that it caused so much trouble with the previous churches and their dislike of anything that might make us happy.

I regret that I spend so much money on them. Between feed, their new barn, the electricity for the barn, cages, accessories, show entries, etc- rabbits are very expensive.

I regret that it's hard to go on vacation because we have to find someone trustworthy to take care of the animals I've invested so much in.

In my darkest times, when babies die, when I'm exhausted and have to go out in the cold rain to feed and water- I do regret getting in to rabbits.

However. The thrill of a win, the excitement of a new litter, watching babies grow in to gorgeous adults... that's incredible.

I think about the friends I've made in doing rabbits. Folks that are local, folks that are North, are South, are far to the west, are in other countries- and that's incredible.

I think about living in our previous area and the ONLY THING WE HAD was the rabbits. Our excuse to get away, to see friends, to win little victories in the struggle of misery, when hateful people tried hard to push us down and ruin us- and it's incredible.

I feel like the rabbits have cost us some convenience and some money we'd have just blown in other ways- more tv channels or eating out more. They've given me back so much more though.

I don't regret getting in to rabbits. I hope I am able to stay in for the next 80 years or so.

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Entries are in!

Well, the Convention entries are in! I had a bit of an issue getting them submitted the first time around, but everything worked out fine in the end. WHEW!! The only thing still left on my "to do list" is to rent a car!

I am taking three sale rabbits- one is presold and the other two will be available before and after Convention judging. One is a broken black tort buck adn the other is a broken black buck.

I'm LOVING this cooler weather! It gives me some small hope that my rabbits might have coats in time for the show!

Our next show is on the 16th. I can't wait for it to get here! This is my club's first show and I'm hoping for a huge turnout :).

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, October 2, 2010


I finally had a litter born! It's been a few weeks since I've had babies and I'm thrilled that one of the does I got from Brandi kindled for me today. She had five, but two were peanuts, one was a DOA and the last two are looking great! One is a solid, one is a broken- and I'm thrilled to say that the broken looks like it will definitely have at least 10% color! WOOO HOO! Now I just hope it's a broken DOE, I have three broken bucks right now and nothing else.

These babies are out of my buck Keep's Tar Heel. I think I need to give him a rest from breeding, he's been with all the ladies lately. :).

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Barn Blind

I have caught myself getting barn blind recently.

Actually- this most is mostly in regards to a single rabbit.

Some months ago I lost a VERY special rabbit. It was one of those things where he was fine in the morning and gone that afternoon and it broke my heart because I had loved him since he was two weeks old.

Since I had sold his dad not that long before he passed away, I had no way to repeat the breeding and pray to get another "just like him." So I used his half brother instead and I got a beautifully colored little buck that I named in his honor.

This buck, to put it frankly, has probably stayed longer than he should have.

Why? He's NOT the buck I lost. I knew early on he wasn't the same, but I hoped. I wanted so badly to have that first buck back. He's not coming back, and keeping an animal that won't help my program won't bring him back.

This is one of the causes of barn blindness. We get so wrapped up in who the parents are, who the rabbit is related to, the color, one aspect- and we can't do that. If my other buck was still alive, I know this one would have been gone months ago.

With my need for cage space, I've been slowly chipping away at this blindness- trying to make myself stop thinking of him in terms of who I wanted him to be and seeing what I really got.

It's hard. It's necessary though, because nothing is gained unless you keep the best fits for your herd- and unfortunately, I don't there there is a place here for this buck.


Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, September 27, 2010

Long Time, No Post!

Wow, so it's been a long time without any updates from me.

There isn't too much going on. I have just a few rabbits for sale, my litters haven't been particularly successful lately and everyone is STILL in a molt. Thankfully there is some sign of wool growing back, but it's growing back AWFULLY slow, especially considering Convention is coming up in a little over a month.

I am looking forward to visiting Minnesota. For me, it's a chance to spend a week with friends I rarely get to see, in a place I've never been, more than it is about showing the rabbits. That's why my show team will be small and my sale animals will probably be limited to just two.

I have a little junior buck (not yet weaning age) who is fighting wry neck. He was getting much better, then as tends to happen, at the time of the second treatment he got worse. He's such a beautiful, friendly little guy that I feel like I owe him the chance to bounce back. He's the only one in the litter affected, I'm wondering if part of it wasn't brought on by the temperature changes we've been having.

I have several does that I need to start thinking about retiring soon. That always makes me sad- bucks can go forever, but does only have a limited amount of time to be mothers.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


I need to start palpating my does more often. I just had another round of failed breedings and you know- had I palpated two weeks ago, I could already be seeing if litters were on the way THIS round.

A lot of it comes down to laziness. I like to feed and water, I am trying to get pics for the website, I need to clean, I try to groom a little every night- it seems like an extra hassle to pull out often very grumpy does to have them tense up and try to keep me from feeling anything.

However- it's not cool to find empty nestboxes either. The does give me these teehee looks and go on about their business- grrr.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Show Day

Wow, I am so tired!

The show in Greensboro was fun! We had some new exhibitors- well when I say new, I mean ones we don't normally encounter at our local shows- one lady was from Maryland and Brian Caudhill came over from Tennessee.

My show team consisted of one senior buck that has a dead coat and a bunch of babies that range from having no coat, to a soft, half blown baby coat.

Guess how I did today?! LOL!

It was fun, I won a few classes, took a group win, got 3 "second opinions" on my crop of juniors and made a few cuts! There were a lot of laughs to be had and it was so nice to see everyone!

I had a good time, even though we didn't come home with any trophies. Now I just have to concentrate on getting some coats back on my bunnies!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, September 17, 2010

Happy Friday

Happy Friday folks! I love Fridays :).

I managed to pick some rabbits to show this weekend. A good few from last weekend are staying home because of their massive molts and I may end up scratching a few as I brush and tattoo them today.

It's shaping up to be a junior-evaluating show, as I only have one senior not pregnant or in a full molt.

I've got a few I'm taking to the show for sale- a blue tort buck, a black tort buck, possibly a broken black tort buck and maybe a few more.. BUCKS. I'm overrun with them right now. The worst part is, I can't decide who to keep and who to let go- they are all so flipping cute.

That's what will be helpful about the show on Saturday- I can get a fresh eye both from the judges and my friends. Yay!

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

To show again?

Last week was the Mountain State Fair. This week is the Greensboro Show.

90% of my rabbits look like they fell out of the molty tree and hit every branch on the way down.

That leaves me very limited options as to who I want to take and show. Should I show some of the same rabbits I took last week? Should I just take the older ones and leave the juniors that showed at home?

There are two schools of thought on that.

One group says don't show them continuously back to back. It makes them more prone to stressing, increases the chance they'll get sick or die and is just too much for the rabbit.

One group says it doesn't matter one way or the other, show what you want to show.

I think I fall somewhere in between. My normal preference is to not show the same rabbits on back to back weekends. However, in a case like this where I have no other options, I'll evaluate them on an individual basis. Did the rabbit lose a lot of condition from the previous show? Did they go off feed? Did they have soft poo or show signs of stress?

If the rabbit looks healthy, feels healthy and is exhibiting healthy behavior, I will consider them for the show table this weekend. If they seem even the slightest bit stressed out, or that they didn't jump right back to their routine immediately on getting back home, they'll stay home. Points and trophies aren't worth compromising the health or life of any of the show herd.

Really though, in a case like this where it is one single back-to-back weekend, everyone should be fine. Just really consider not making it an every weekend type thing. I know I'd not be happy doing a show every single weekend and I don't have to be the one handled by an unfamiliar person!

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Mountain State Fair

Wow- it rained the entire time at the Mountain State Fair! So much for getting to visit the fair!

It was nice to see that everyone had been hit with the molty stick just as hard as we had! It was fun though, the judges noticed the lack of wool on the woolies and we all had a good time kidding back and forth about it. Judge Bill Whaley led us all in a chorus of "It's got no wool!" when one of Joni's rabbits was being placed.

We had a new judge, one from Texas who someone said was a meat breed judge for Show A. I didn't do as well as I would have liked under him.

Under Bill Whaley in Show B, we did really well. Tryon took BOB, Panda and Elon both won their classes and "Dunno" a black junior buck took 2 of 6.

It was so nice to hear the judges commenting on how strong some of the classes were! When they say things like that, or let you know how close the placements are, it really gives you a sense of pride, whether you finish 3rd or first!

I have no idea what I'll be showing this weekend in Greensboro!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, September 10, 2010

A Show! Finally a Show!

Wow, the title says it all- finally a show! I've only been to one this "Season" and I'm raring to go, even though everyone looks awful. No really- they look AWFUL.

There is my jr. buck who won BOB at the last show. Yeahhhhh he's thankfully not entered because I had a feeling he was going to blow his coat. Did I think he was going blow it quite like this? No!

This show is the Mountain State Fair in Fletcher, NC. It's one of my favorites. It's always so much fun, we get fun out of state judges and of course- free fair admission LOL!

It's also going to be so much fun because I will have an opportunity to see my bunny friends!

This is the second year a friend has asked that I donate a junior wooly or two to try to help garner interest in rabbits as 4-H animals in her county. I'm so excited, the one last year went to a fantastic home, so I hope the one(s) this year do just as well! :).

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Rabbit Etchings

A friend of mine, Ragen at Celestial Wind Rabbitry, has turned her glass etching into a nifty opportunity for rabbit lovers!

She is offering etching of any breed you want on glass surfaces- these would make great Christmas gifts, awards, etc.

Take a look at her website, maybe something will catch your eye!


Friday, September 3, 2010

Molty Goodness

I've been wanting to update my website with some new pictures- however it's impossible! All the seniors are in funky molts and all the juniors are molting or in their uglies!

It's sad, because I really want to get more of my herd up on the website. I guess it is just going to have to wait though.

In the meantime, here are a few of the "uglies" babies that are floating around.

Keep's Triumph- a wooled himi.

Just kidding! Here he is posed up. Note that incredible molt?! His color is all kinds of awful right now too lol.

Keep's Tar Heel- he's got a skirt on lol. He looked at me as if to say "Why do you want a picture of my SHAME?"

These babies aren't old enough to be ugly yet!! Aren't they adorable?

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


I got a couple does bred last night! Yay! The bucks both got their ladies three times, which always makes me feel better. The girls have been on a special "babymaker" conditioner that a friend shared with me- though I'm not allowed to share what's in it.

My next litters aren't due until September 11th. I guess it's a good thing that I have a large break in between my litters (the last one being born about a week ago). It'll give me a chance to move out some animals!

I'm trying to get started on my Convention sales list. I will be offering transport to and from convention. The holes are DWARF sized, but I do have an adjustable carrier. Please be aware though, larger animals will cost more per hole, because it requires more of my limited space to bring it back.

I am also offering care at Convention- feeding, watering and cleaning of the shavings, for a small fee.

My next show, the Mountain State Fair, is coming up soon!! I am not expecting any spectacular results, we had to send in entries in the middle of august (great news) and almost everyone I entered are horribly molting LOL! Ahhh well, it will just be nice to go and see everyone! I guess I'd rather them be primed for convention.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Lark Update

Well, here is the long overdue update on the wooly doe bred by the belgian buck.

She never nested, never kindled. However, upon palpating her again (she's over a week overdue), I still can feel something in there. Her belly is big and she just feels pregnant in general..

I suspect that I was successful in terminating the kit(s), but unfortunately she never triggered to go in to labor and since she is eating well and active, I suspect that the kit(s) have mummified.

Just perfect.

I have two options at this point- pet her out (she's not really got a pet personality, let's be honest) or rebreed her and try to get her to pass the belgian kits. Well I suppose a third option is to put her down, but that's one I'd like to avoid if at all possible.


Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Getting overwhelmed

I'm trying to establish a routine. Now that I am thankfully employed again, Tim and I have been frantically searching for a second car. We've checked out probably every decent used car in several counties and unfortunately we've been screwed over trying to buy one (so we walked out) and the other was sold out from under us. *sigh*

So we're looking for a new car. Bah.

Anyway, this brings me to the rabbit point- I've been a bit overwhelmed between my new job and my "it seems like a full time job" car search.

I spent a few hours yesterday grooming out some juniors. Wow no one is in coat at all. It's a bit upsetting with the show season starting in just a few short weeks! The juniors I wormed in hopes of getting them to molt have disappointed me- no full blown molts!

The seniors are all looking half/half right now. Eurgh!! Incredibly frustrating. It's hard to stay on top of 40ish molting woolies.

I need to find the time to sweep the rabbitry floor, tattoo a few new ones and set up my breeding board so I know who is due when and who needs to be rebred!

I need to get a control on this soon before it spirals out of control!

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Oddball doe-

I have a doe outside FRANTICALLY nesting. She keeps scratching the bottom of her box and carrying around large mouthfuls of hair.

The problem is- her baby is already born! In fact, he's two weeks old.

o.O I'm not sure what she's doing, but she is CONVINCED she needs another nest. I ended up having to take away her baby and foster him to another litter to make sure she didn't accidentally hurt him.

I had a litter born tonight- one REW peanut and one REW. Apparently, for whatever reason, I really favored the REW x REW litters this round. I think it will be my last litter with this doe. Her kits are beautiful and very sweet, but she's such a little witch. I think she really doesn't enjoy life.

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, August 20, 2010

A Meanness Issue

I have a young junior buck. He's around 3 1/2 months old and at 2 weeks old was the most FRIENDLY baby I've ever met. He always greeted me at the front of the cage and would hop out if I left the door open to come visit my foot.

I weaned him and his foster sister. The buck went to his cage, the doe went to a separate one. For a while, that was no big deal.

Then, one day he started hiding at the back of the cage. I'd pull him out occasionally to run a brush through his wool and then put him back in.

Not long afterwards, he'd start feinting a charge at my hand. He never touched me, but he liked to act like he was going to.

We then progressed to actually touching my hand. Still, he never put his teeth on me.

Today he grazed my knuckle with his teeth when I put my hand in to feed. He knows I'm coming, as is evidenced by his hiding in the back of the cage and watching me like a hawk. He thumps when I walk by and runs to the back of his cage.

I'm really not sure what to do with him. I'm at max capacity with my cages as it is. I've had twitchy bucks that later turn sweet- well maybe not sweet, but at least they chill out some. However, I've never experienced a lover buck turn mean.

Part of me says give him at least until 5 months old to calm his little butt down. The other part says there is no place in the herd for a mean buck- especially since I need more space anyway.

Ugh, I guess I need to get out to Brandi's to pick up that 6 hole stacker I have on hold- that will help reduce the cage space strain and then I won't rush a decision.

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Quick Update!

I managed to get WWR's Rice Ball bred and gave Wooligans Heartless her last try. If she doesn't kindle live babies for me, I'm going to have to let her go. She's a fantastically beautiful, bucky doe, but while she's kindled very large litters, they are always born dead. *sigh*

Brandi of BL's Bunny Barn is selling out. We're going to miss her. She's got some cute animals available, all ages and color groups, so if you're needing something, check her out. I am offering transport to Convention (via airline shipping).

Lark is nesting. Figures, she's the only one of the three girls due that is even playing in the hay. Eurgh.

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, August 16, 2010

Baby Boom!

I'm so happy, we're having quite the little baby boom right now!

Keep's Epiphany kindled two- one pinky (either REW or the dreaded Pointed) and one shaded baby! :D. She was linebred back to her daddy, Keep's Tryon, so I'm VERY excited about this litter.

Keep's Angel kindled two as well- one pinky and one pinky with a little color... could it, could it be an orange?! Only a little more time will tell, but my fingers are very crossed! Of course you know what they say about counting your kits before they are weaned.

Keep's Smoke kindled for the first time, one single DOA. Considering her age, I'm thrilled she kindled. Her nest could have been better, but she plucked plenty of wool, so she's got potential. It was this lucky girl's last chance. I'll wait a little while and rebreed her :).

Keep's Misunderstood, Keep's Lark ( :( ) and Wooligans Delaney are all due on the 18th.

I could have SWORN I bred WWR's Rice Ball, but don't have it recorded. I'll palpate her tomorrow and if she's been sitting all this time, I'll breed her. It's possible she was in the earlier group that all missed.

I'm hoping to breed Rice Ball, Prancer, Heartless (all shadeds) and a new Agouti doe in the next few days.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Trials of Outcross

I brought in an outcross buck, who's pretty nice looking. I bred him around to several does so I could get a quicker idea of what he produces- IE, I bred him a lot, knowing I might have to trash him and an entire generation, rather than feeding him for a year and finding out the same thing.

However, if he throws gorgeous babies, I'll have lots of them more quickly!

I'm eagerly awaiting them to come out of uglies. They are all around 3- 3 1/2 months old, so most don't have any wool caps at all and still have a lot of filling out to do. By the time show season starts, I should *hopefully* know who I like. Unfortunately, most of the babies are BUCKS! ARRGH!!

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Babies born!

YAY! I had three babies born to a first time doe, Keep's Snow. It's the first litter out of Lyle Creek's Fabulous. I was starting to worry that maybe he was sterile :(. I'm happy to report he's not!

All three babies are REW, because that's what both the parents are :). I have NO idea what color Snow is hiding, though I do know that Fabulous is a self underneath his REW. Snow was out of Keep's Forest, so she does have a chance of being an agouti, which means the babies also have a chance of being an agouti.

I checked on Lyle Creek's Kendra and her two nestbox babies while I was out- thank goodness I did! Kendra has pulled more wool and her two babies were slow cooking! I pulled some fur out and moved them to the front of the box where they could cool off a little bit.

I've got 3 more does due on the 13th. I'm hoping they all take, especially since one gives me my best chance for ORANGES!

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Too Hot to Live!

Ugh, it's miserable outside! Thankfully the bunnies are safe inside their A/C'd barn. It's still warm in there, because I won't turn it on full blast, but it's definitely knocked the heat down a level.

I'm dying for a show! It's been so long. Most of my juniors look NASTY because of this weather! I'm going to go on and worm, which will hopefully blow their coats off. Even if they can't show in September, they'll be more comfortable and will be on their way to prime :).

I've got some woolies that are needing new homes- most can go as pets, broods or shows, they just need to go!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, August 6, 2010

Keep Records!!

Oh gosh- I made a big goof and didn't even intend to!

When I sold out my holland lops, I had 11 babies to move out and I didn't record who I sold them to in my pedigree program.

I was browsing websites and found the website of one person who had purchased several animals- some pedigreed and some pets. I emailed her based on a picture on her site, telling her that the pedigree information listed for one of the rabbits wasn't correct- I had convinced myself she had purchased 2 brokens as pedigreed animals and 2 solids as pets.

It turned out the pedigree (which I had supplied) WAS correct- my memory had failed me and she did get a solid animal with a pedigree. What started out as an attempt to make sure her pedigrees were accurate (especially because the pet animals carried a rainbow of colors behind them, while the others didn't) turned in to my giving a youth breeder a mini-heartattack.

It's important to keep good records! Unfortunately, my tattooer needle BROKE as I started pedigreeing the 11 holland babies, so only one got any kind of ID mark in it's ear.

Because I was selling out the hollands, I didn't do my usual record keeping. Eurgh.

KEEP GOOD RECORDS! That way you don't end up making a similar mistake!

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Palpating Lark

I palpated Lark tonight.

I sadly suspect she is pregnant, I thought I felt a baby in her stomach. While I'm not 100% accurate on palpating, I will be proceeding forward as if she is pregnant.


Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, August 2, 2010

My new barn!!

My new barn is ready!

The most beautiful thing I've ever seen! It took weeks to get the electricity run to the building in an affordable manner- the first quote was from someone trying to blatantly rip us off, then we had to dodge thunderstorms daily once we finally found someone to do it for us.

Looky what I have! :) I'm planning on just keeping a small amount of cool air running through the rabbitry- enough to knock down the heat and not much more.

The bunnies settled in! :)

I still have a few more things to set up- my shelves, my water jug, etc, but I'm so happy to have the buns in there! :).

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The Barn

We had plans to have the rabbits installed in their new barn yesterday. It figures then, that it would rain most of the day. In between dodging rain drops and sitting inside cursing the downpours, we managed to move 23 cages and their occupants in. :) So at least we're around halfway done!

It's weird to have the herd split up the way it is, I definitely am hoping we're able to fit everyone else in their homes tonight.

Looking out the window- it's still raining. NOO! At least anything could happen- with NC if you don't like the weather, just wait 5 minutes.

I suspect I'll have to have another herd reduction. Ok, scratch that- I know I will. I've got too many juniors that will need to move out and since I knew not all of my cages would fit in the new barn, I'll have to get rid of more adults as well. I did talk Tim in to letting me keep a trio of cages in the garage to house the pets- Joe the Mini Lop, Scout the neutered mixbreed and Pants, the VM Netherland. I'm still hoping to convince him that Pants needs to come inside, but so far I'm losing that particular battle.

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

One Week

It's been one week since Bandit made a mess of things.

Today I'll be following the advice of a friend and withholding food from Lark for the day, which is supposed to cause her to miss. We're coming up on a time where I can palpate her with some degree of accuracy.

If I find out that she is indeed pregnant and the lavender (I gave about a 1 1/2" piece to her last night again) and the short feed rations haven't worked, I'll have to stop the attempts and just concentrate on making her as strong as I can for the delivery.

Fingers crossed for me everyone!

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Lavender arrived!

The Lavender has arrived!

It's a very fragrant plant. I pinched off about an inch of it (the leaves) and placed it on top of Lark's feed. I also gave her a little bit of hay, to help with any upset stomach she might get from the unaccustomed food. I'm hoping that this small amount will help get things going.

Unfortunately, she's naturally suspicious of anything new, so she didn't immediately dive it to eat it. I'll be monitoring her and the tray of her cage to make sure she eats it.

If she doesn't, I think I may mix a pinch of lavender with a little water and make a lavender mash that I can squirt directly in to her mouth.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, July 24, 2010


I'm not just saying that either- it's obscenely hot.

At 11am this morning, it was 89 with a heat index of 99. It's set to reach 97 degrees at the hottest part of the day. Do the math on that one! ICK.

The rabbits have been getting frozen tiles and we installed the AC for their new barn in to the garage to help move the air around. It's much too small to actually cool the building, unfortunately.

The last of the adult hollands left today. Tomorrow the last two broken babies will leave to go to their new home, and I'll have only a solid baby buck left. It's nice to have a few extra cages that I can use to spread out the babies and wean litters.

We're expecting to have electricity to the barn on MONDAY! YAY!

I'm hoping a good thing to come out of the heat is perhaps it will help Lark to miss. My wonderful friend Jodi at Sugar and Spice Rabbitry is rushing some Lavender leaves out to me to help with Miss Lark. I may bring her inside when they get here and give her a day to settle in before I give them to her- that way I can more easily monitor her.

She's angry at me for being on her 1/4 cup diet of pellets. Little does she realize it's for the best!

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Day 2: Indecision

I'm so torn-

I've had a LOT of folks offer a lot of very good advice, whether by posting it on facebook, emailing me, pming me, what have you.

In the course of the help, there has been a good amount of advice on which herbs to use and several other plans of "attack".

Several folks have also talked to their various vets, or vets they know of. We've received several opinions, varying from "leave her alone and let her have them" to "try to get her to miss".

So I'm not sure what to do- I think I am going to continue on my course to get her to miss. If I palpate her positive, then I may have to just hope for the best and let her have them, but until I can palpate them, I think I'm going to continue to do everything in my power to have her miss.

We're in the midst of a search for Lavender. I thought I had found some at Lowes the other day, but of course they were sold out! I'm planning on trying another one today.

Thank you so much to everyone for the support.

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Chronicling a Disaster

The Disaster: I discovered my Belgian Hare buck, Bandit, in the cage of one of my wooly does, On a Lark. Lark has had 2 unsuccessful litters so far with bucks smaller than she is, all resulted in DOA litters that she struggled to deliver. Bandit is every bit of 4 times larger than she is. Perfect.

As best I can reconstruct the evening, after I put him back in his cage from an hour of playing on the grass, I didn't get his door locked securely behind me. It's one of those plastic solid bottom cages, with plastic latches that slide into the metal. Sometimes they appear to be latched when they aren't.

At some point, Bandit discovered the door situation and pushed it open. The door to the garage was left cracked to help with extra ventilation, so he had to have left the building completely to get out of his cage, due to where he's set up. So, he spent an undetermined amount of time outside the safety of the building. He scooted under the garage and gained access to the rest of the rabbitry.

When he reached the end of the aisle, he discovered Lark's cage. It's the bottom hole in a stacker and on legs, so she should have been around his eye level. There was a small, small hole where a J feeder should have been- but it was broken and so wasn't on the cage. The hole is not the size of 2 small cage cups side by side, but he managed to cram his large body into the cage.

When I discovered him, the floor of the rabbit cage was covered in Lark's wool and he was looking very self satisfied. He'd spent an unknown amount of time with her, and it could have been up to 23 hours.

I flipped out. Shaking, bawling- my first thought was "Who put this rabbit here?!" I carried him to his cage convinced that Bandit would have been safely in his own cage and this was some interloping hare (yeah..the odds of a random belgian in the rabbitry? I know, I know).

I have never had an accidental breeding. Ever. I make sure bucks and does aren't out together unless I intend to breed them, I make sure carriers are closed if they contain mixed groups- this incident upsets me beyond my ability to express myself.

The Concern: Because Lark has had two litters with rough results when bred to a smaller buck of her own breed, I am concerned that she will not be able to pass any babies and will die as a result.

The Game Plan: Right now, my best plan is to try to cause her to miscarry or reabsorb babies. There is the chance that she didn't take, but I can't wait until I know for sure to begin to remedy the problem, so I'm proceeding on the assumption that Bandit bred her for almost a whole day whenever the mood struck him. As he is NOT a lazy breeder- this could be many, many times.

I am going to chronicle my attempts and methods, in the hopes that these will work and help someone that may find themselves in the same situation in the future, though I wouldn't wish this on anyone. I had nightmares last night that all the rabbits had managed to get out of their cages and were running free. I would catch a few and put them up and then they'd get right back out. My nerves are fried.

Day 1:

Today, Lark went on a car ride. I'm hoping that it will stress her out and make her body less receptive to having babies. I am giving her Parsley, which a friend has heard could cause miscarriage.

I'll be cutting her pellets down to 1/2 and supplementing her with hay. It's my hope that a lesser amount of food will trigger her body to worry about starvation and will cause her to reabsorb any babies. She will NOT be in danger of starving, no worries. She's a young, healthy doe, so a reduction in her food until I can palpate positively or negatively.

It seems that Lavender is a good uterine stimulant, I'll be searching the nurseries for a plant.

Please keep your fingers crossed for her. I don't think I'll sleep for weeks.

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Farewell Hollands

I'm so bummed out. It's easy to say you're selling out, but it is so depressing when it really happens. Five holland babies went to their new homes today and the last two are going tomorrow. After that, ALL the hollands will have been sold, with the last four being picked up this Saturday.

It's HARD. I have to remind myself WHY I chose to sell out the hollands. I can always get a pet holland in the future, or even get back in to them if I want to.

So Farewell to the Hollands. You guys were my first breed. If not for a poor example of the breed, a blue tort otter holland doe, I'd have never found out about rabbit shows. There were the ups and the downs, but you guys will all be a special part of my rabbit memories.

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Taylorsville Night Show

The Taylorsville Nite Show was a fun one, despite the disgusting humidity, the heat and the awful storms we got stuck in driving up that way.

Joni and I got to the show room early and took care of grooming, tattooing and just general set up. It was so nice to be able to sit and relax for a while.

The highlight of my night came in the first show, when my little shaded junior buck Keep's Little Comment took BOB! I had been shocked when he beat out Tryon for group, but to have him go "all the way" was incredible.

It was one of those fun shows where we had four different winners- the same person didn't take BOB or BOSB twice, which meant a lot of folks went home happy! We also had some folks from outside our usual showing range.

Thankfully there are no more shows for a while. My self senior buck Poplar did well, taking 2nd in both shows, but he's definitely sporting a mohawk as a wool cap, a process he had started before we got to the show and something he worked on the whole time we were there. Most of the others are looking a little rough themselves. I've got a ton of juniors here who will have to get to work on maturing so they'll be ready to debut at the fall shows.

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

NJWRC Points


The points were updated recently (July 13th) for the National Jersey Wooly Rabbit Club. *This is not the final list*

I am VERY pleased to announce that Keep's Rabbitry is #10 Overall in Open points and #2 in District 9!

I'm absolutely thrilled. I've worked really hard on my herd and I'm pleased to see how we compared to others over this showing year! I can only imagine where I'd have placed had several shows I attended actually sent in their point reports! O.O

I just had to share my joy with you guys :).

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Picking Entries

It's time to pick entries for the next show. I complain every time that it's so hard to know who to choose! Especially with this head right now, you never know who is going to end up without a wool cap or blowing their coat completely in the next five minutes.

Since it's been so long since a show, I know I have a lot of bunnies I WANT to show- juniors out for the first time, newly turned seniors, a few that just need that last leg...

However, I doubt everyone is in condition to show.

It's ridiculously humid outside, it looks like I'm going to have to wait until tonight to go through everyone and decide who gets to come with me.

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, July 12, 2010

Calling all Writers-

A new Bunny only magazine is kicking off and it's looking for volunteer writers. Articles can be about anything rabbit related or breed specific!

Please do your best to send in fully edited article- punctuation, capitalization, complete sentences- that kind of thing.

Please send your articles to Brittany at victorylanerbbts@yahoo.com as soon as you are able.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, July 10, 2010

More barn news and updates

Ugh, we've hit a bit of a snag with the barn- for a lot of frustrating reasons, the electricity won't be hooked up to the barn until next Saturday.

ERUGH! I'm in a mood about it, I can tell ya.

We got some Thompson's Water Seal today and I'm hoping to get it on the floor of the barn tomorrow. That way, it has time to dry completely and of course, the barn will have plenty of time to air out before the electricity is hooked up.

It's so hot, it seems like all the rabbits are molting right now- maybe I can talk Tim in to spending Friday helping me scrub down cages so they'll be squeaky clean when they go in to the new area.

Saturday is the Taylorsville Night Show- it'll be so great to get back to showing!

The little peanut finally died. It's kind of a relief, to be honest. It's been rough going out there day after day, wondering if today will be the day.

I don't have any more does due until the first part of August. I guess I need to get out there and breed a few more.

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, July 9, 2010

The New Barn!

The new barn is here! We purchased the AC right after it arrived yesterday- I've got my fingers crossed that it fits in the window, it's going to be tight.

I can't wait to get the bunnies moved in! We've got a few other things to do before they make the short trip over.

I've made a few more decisions in which bunnies will be leaving here- which is actually exciting for me. I know they'll turn out beautifully, but you know how it is, I've got to make some cuts!

I'm pleased to say that I think I'll be able to keep more cages than I originally thought. I will still probably be letting a few go. I wish I could outfit the new barn with new cages as well, but that is definitely going to have to wait!

Pictures coming when everyone is set up :D.

Keep's Rabbitry

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Peanut Update

My peanut is still alive. It doesn't look like it's growing at all, but it's still alive and kicking.

I have no, literally, NO idea what I am going to do with thing if it survives to weaning.

Scratch that, I actually might. I just met someone recently who loves to take hard luck cases. She currently has a pet bunny with a broken back that she loves to distraction, that gets bathed daily and wears a diaper.

I wonder if she'd be willing to take on a little, odd peanut. After all, if it survives, it's surely going to be adorable and tiny.

I'm getting ahead of myself of course- it's only a week old.

I'll have to get pictures of it and it's humongoid fatty fatty siblings. I keep expecting to go in there and find that it's passed away. I have two does due soon- if they take, I may foster the peanut over to one of them, to give it a better chance for milk with the smaller babies.

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


We just got a call- the new barn will be here bright and early Thursday morning! I'm so excited- though of course, that is supposed to be the hottest part of the week, with temperatures soaring to a crisp (and I mean burnt) 98 degrees.

We'll be getting a small AC window unit for the rabbitry tomorrow.

I can't wait! It will be so nice to have everyone out of the garage and in to their own place.

I would so love to have a barn opening party- surely I can talk friends across the country in to dropping their plans and racing out here on Thursday for the ribbon cutting ceremony and a grand walk through- right?


Guess that may be a little far to travel. Hm.

Pictures will be coming as soon as it's set up! :D.

Keep's Rabbitry

Monday, July 5, 2010

YAY for breedings

I'm tickled for multiple reasons.

I got my first Keep's Poplar babies. A TORT and a Chestnut! O.O That means I could breed Poplar to a tort or sable point and get ORANGES! I'm thinking hard of pulling his mom off the sales list and giving that breeding a try, just to see.

My live peanut is still alive. I think it's starting to fade a bit though, I don't think it will last much longer.

I got 4 breedings done yesterday- I think they'll be spectacular! Poor Tryon gives me the most pitiful look when the other bucks get ladies and he doesn't- but that's a whole 'nother blog!

I'm waiting on WWR Rice Ball to kindle- she's 3 days overdue, but when I palpated her last night, I definitely felt a baby in there. I stopped as soon as I felt that first one. Hopefully she'll go soon.

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, July 4, 2010

4th of July Oddity

Happy 4th of July!

I've got an oddity in the rabbitry- one of my does kindled on July 1st. She had 2 normals and 2 peanuts, one peanut being a DOA. I didn't remove the other one immediately like I usually did, because when I found them they were all freshly born and I usually like to give them a day of nursing and life to be sure they are peanuts.

It's now July 4th. I have a 3 day old peanut that is still alive. Not only still alive, it's eating. Not thriving, but it's being fed and taken care of.

I've heard of folks who have "peanuts" that live past 3 days, and I always sort of thought those people were crazy. You know- it surely wasn't really a peanut, it was just a runt, that kind of thing.

Nope- it's an actual peanut- down to the ear size being off, it's still the size it was when it was born, etc. It's very strange.

It's the only solid kit in the litter, the other two babies are brokens. I'm going to keep an eye on it. I worry that sooner, rather than later, the other two siblings are going to prevent it from nursing and the little peanut will pass. It's just so strange to go out and see it! I'll have to get some pictures.

Keep's Rabbitry

Saturday, July 3, 2010

How the Bunnies Ruined the 4th of July.

I know it's the 3rd of July. And I know it's only noon, so we still have a lot of day to go through, but I had to share this.

My brother and my dad are coming over later today. My brother Josh is off at NADC in Nashville, so it's rare he gets back. We're grilling out a little early for the 4th and plan to go see the fireworks later tonight.

I decided to go all out and make some homemade ice cream. The last time I used my Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker it was an unmitigated disaster- it was it's first time out of the box and my usual recipe just did NOT turn out correctly.

So, I researched new recipes and found one. After 20 minutes of painstaking preparation, I turn the machine on and get to cleaning up the kitchen. 15 minutes in, I check on it- the ice cream is looking fantastic. 20 minutes in, it's looking even better. We're coming up on the 25 minute switch off period when Tim comes running in the house, baby holland in his hands. I run out to put the little guy back, wondering how he got out of his cage when I notice that the litter has knocked their J feeder off, and two more are missing.

Thus ensues a baby-hunt of epic proportions, through the crowded garage. We finally wrangle the missing two and I put them in their cage and rehang the J feeder.

I come back in the house and realize that the ice cream machine is still on. No big deal, I thought.

Apparently, I have now succeeded in making vanilla-flavored whipped cream. I'm so not kidding. I wish I was. Who knew 10 extra minutes made such a big deal in this ice cream maker?

There is no time to make more, I can't eat more than a spoon full because it literally tastes like Whipped Cream and my Pièce de résistance of the meal is ruined.

*sigh* OH bunnies.

Keep's Rabbitry

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Kinda Bummed

I'm kind of bummed out.

I recently got an incorrect show report, and when I contacted the show secretary, found out it was a misreporting on the paperwork she got. It basically gave my buck's BOSB win to a different animal. The buck in question actually has passed away, but it does cost me both sweepstakes points and herdsman points.

It's not a big deal in the long run, points aren't the end of the world, it just kind of bums me out a little bit.

I guess I'm mostly sad because I lost the buck and it was his last show ever- and then his paperwork came back wrong. :(. It's SO easy to see how it could have happened though, especially when you're trying to shuffle through the paperwork, while people around you are talking. Some judges mumble, or get confused in placements at first, which throw the writers off- I've been there before, where I very nearly made the same mistake in hollands for BOB and BOSB.

It's too bad there isn't a way to get the writer and maybe 2 witnesses to contact the show secretary to validate the claim and get it changed- of course then I'd have to find out who was writing (I didn't attend this show, Joni took a pair of bucks and showed them for me) and see if anyone could remember who won- but what's done is done, the sec. said nothing can be changed now. :(

Ahh well, like I said, it doesn't matter for the actual working herd. I can think of worse scenarios that could have happened.

Keep's Rabbitry

Litter Consistency

I've been trying to evaluate some of the wooly babies over the last few days- at least enough to say "Ok, you're 3/3 in the litter, you have to move out."

I can't even do that right now. It's ridiculous.

I am amazed and thrilled at the consistency I'm getting in my litters right now. Body type is very similar, heads and ears are very similar- it makes it miserable for me to decide who to move out, I can tell you that.

It sure doesn't make it any easier that most of these beautiful babies are bucks. Eurgh, I have such a weakness for bucks!

I know I should begin looking at color- for example, I have a litter of four bucks- 2 REWs, a chestnut and an otter. I KNOW what the otter is, I KNOW what the chestnut is- the REWs could be either one. So it really makes more sense for me to keep either the agouti or the tan pattern. Of course, I don't really need bucks in either variety. Thus part of my quandary. Why did I do the breeding you ask? I was hoping for does lol.

UGH! What to do, what to do- I can NOT grow out all 13 of these bucks. Especially since I've got approximately 5 bucks out of a new buck with another litter of 3 not to weaning age. These babies I'll need to keep longer because I'm not sure how the dad's line develops, which means some of these others have GOT to go!

Wish me luck on making a decision :(.

Keep's Rabbitry

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Another thing has fallen in to place!

I located a feed dealer about 25 minutes away who was already carrying Purina Show Formula! A little nervous, I asked to see the mill date on the bags before I committed to purchasing any- April 20th of this year! WOW only 2 months old! I'm thrilled, the poor bunnies were lucky to get 6 month old feed in the mountains.

I plan on taking some business cards next time we get some feed- the walls were covered in ads for horses, mini horses, goats, poultry- pretty much anything you could want was there- even listings for barn cats!

I also picked up a bale of hay. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get it at the same feed store, and I'm not 100% thrilled with it, but it is a pretty nice mix of Orchard Grass and Timothy Hay, which is better than the "catch as you can" mix I was relying on.

We've got our barn ordered and it's being built as we speak.

All of the hollands except Keep's Amelia and the babies have been spoken for, which makes me happy and very sad at the same time.

Keep's Rabbitry

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Bunny Barn

I think I've chosen my bunny barn! It's portable, but a good deal more expensive than I originally was hoping for. However, I'm trying to justify it by saying at least we can take it with us wherever we go, or I can haul it to my dad's property not too far away.

Buying is way cheaper than trying to rent an area. What hurts is that the interest on the Rent to Own is 21.6%. Yeah, OUCH. As I told Tim though- we can buy it outright or use our personal credit card that is only at 5% interest.

I hope to have it here no later than a week and a half from now. Then I want to torch the cages (which are all freshly scrubbed) and put down some heavy plastic on the floor to help protect it. Then we'll move everyone in!

I can finally use my Rabbitry sign without fear it's going to get filthy due to the terrible workmanship of that last rabbitry. The last one let in spiders like crazy and half the floor was plain dirt. You have to work with the cards you're dealt, but I'm so thrilled to be out of there and on my way to a great rabbitry :).

I plan on keeping carriers stored in the garage, along with both grooming tables and my judging coop. I'll probably keep my hay in the garage as well, to have maximum room for the rabbits.

I'm also looking at getting an air conditioner and keeping it on 80 or so, just to knock the heat off the day for the bunnies. Since I'm having the building wired, I'm excited to get in there and do all my little fun projects I've been wanting to do for years- I can put light timers in, the AC, special lights...

YAY for new bunny barns!

Keep's Rabbitry

Friday, June 25, 2010

Holland Lop Sell Out List

I've got to get 10 seconds to myself so I can fully go through the rabbits, but I'll have cages, pet cages, aquariums (not a rabbit item, I'm aware of that), etc.

So far to be available:

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Keep's Misunderstood- REW sr. doe. Carries dilute, she's hiding Agouti and Tan pattern. She's the mother to my adorable little Opal baby. Partially pedigreed, she's out of Quandary, who is out of wooled NDs. This girl is NOT for a timid owner, she's not mean, but she is highly spastic. A wonderful mother, she's got great width, a decent doe head, nice short ears. I wish she was a little shorter in the midsection, nice FULL HQ.

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Keep's Angel- Sable Point Sr. Doe
Fantastic mother, she's small but just kindled 3 babies for me. She is pictured on a litter. I wish her head was wider and her ears have a slight tendency to criss cross at the very tips. She's nice and wide, short and oh yeah- the mother to Keep's Poplar, 2nd Self Sr. Buck at Nationals this year. smile.gif

Lil Bit Farm's Quandary- Broken Black Otter sr. buck. Unshowable because of no butterfly. I had him offered around Nationals time, terminated a sale and kept him, but frankly I'm not using him, so I need to move him out. Will come shaved down because he tends to mat very easily. His daughter has perfect wool though. Only Partially pedigreed, as he is out of wooled Netherlands.

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Keep's Amelia- Sable Point Sr. Doe
Amelia does not pose, so don't ask lol. I love this doe a lot, she's a great size, got very nice bone and chest width. I wish her crown was a little wider, you can see she has ear control. She's developed a kind of hump on her shoulders blink.gif which affects her pose. I'm offering her as a trial doe- her sister was perfectly fine and this is something that developed later on, so I'm not sure if it was an injury or what. She's being discounted because of her oddity. Out of great lines, she's worth a chance.

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Keep's Kira- Broken Tort Sr. Doe PENDING DEPOSIT
Kira is also pretty spazzy. She's a smaller doe, pretty petite and loves to pose very upright. Kira is a FANTASTIC mother, she's raised her litter of 6 with no trouble and had no kindling problems despite being bred to a much larger buck. I wish she was more massive, I kept her to help downsize my buck and Joni's buck Quizno.

Her kits:
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Keep's Rockstar- Blue Tort Sr. Buck

Tiny- tiny, tiny. He's a very small buck with a lot of ear control. I wish he was more massive and had more bone. His parents both had fantastic crowns, so I'm not sure what his deal is, but he's worth trying as a brood buck for his lines alone. I have 6 kits out of him that are looking fantastic.

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Keep's Josie- Broken Blue Tort Sr. Doe
Obviously brood only, Josie's mom chewed her ears off as birth. She's Rockstar's full sister. Like him, she's small. She likes to pose very upright and she has a nice head for her size.

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Lil Bit Farms Lexia- Tort Sr. Doe
Lexia's current litter (who are 3 weeks old, so excuse how rough she looks) are looking great- all FIVE of them. She's just a little over 2 years old, nice and wide with a nice HQ and great bone. She's lengthened out as she's aged, so she's obviously no longer a show lady.

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Lil Bit Farms Sugar- Tort Sr. Doe - PENDING DEPOSIT
She's a pose fighter. Bah. Just ever so slightly over a year old, she's got width for days. Very full in the lower HQ, she needs a less slipped crown (clearly).

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*sigh* This one makes me want to cry. Ok it's honestly too late. I may end up pulling her. sad.gif
Keep's Baby Girl- Tort Sr. Doe
You may remember the last picture I posted of her:
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She is fantastic. I love her crown, love her chunkiness, I love her topline, how she feels when you go over her body, her HQ..... I absolutely would recommend her as a show doe. She's rotten, I had to fight her a little to get her to pose, but she has that show sparkle, the HEY YOU- LOOK AT ME NOW pizazz. She's a little on the smaller side, but no where near as little as Kira.

*more woolies to come tomorrow, as they are evaluated including: Keep's Handstand, REW sr. Doe and Keep's Smoke, BLUE POINT sr. doe*

Red Earred Slider female + 45 gallon long aquarium and stand, plus a huge thing of turtle food, rock decorations and floating resting mat thing. Goes by the name "Turble" thanks to Malena's daughter.

I WILL be adding more animals and pictures as soon as I have a moment.

We are now located in McLeansville, NC, which is just north of Greensboro.

Keep's Rabbitry